Paul Krugman: Goodbye Spin, Hello Raw Dishonesty (NY Times Column)
The first casualty of Trump is truth.
Paul Krugman: Coal Is A State of Mind (NY Times Blog)
The big news from [Trump's Feb 28] speech is that our pundits is not learning. After all the debacles of 2016, they swooned over the fact that Trump - while still lying time after time and proposing truly vile initiatives - was able to read from a teleprompter without breaking into an insane rant. If American democracy falls, supposed political analysts who are actually just bad theater critics will share part of the blame.
Josh Marshall: The Gravity Is Strong (TPM)
Why are there so many unforced errors? Why conceal this meeting? Frankly, why lie about it? As I said, big, big scandals work like this. People who don't even appear to be that close to the action keep getting pulled under for what seem like needless deceptions. The answer is usually that the stuff at the center of the scandal is so big that it requires concealment, even about things distant from the main action, things that it would seem much better and less damaging simply to admit.
S.V. Date, Sam Stein: Trump's Already Small Circle Of Trusted Advisers Suffers Another Big Blow (Huffington Post)
Attorney General Jeff Sessions can no longer protect the president from investigations involving Russia.
Matthew Adams: "Jonathan Swift: Not (entirely) the misanthrope you thought you knew" (Washington Post)
As Stubbs demonstrates so persuasively in this fine biography, Swift, more than most, was a divided soul. He was an ostensibly devout believer who held that religion could teach us how to hate but not how to love. He was undoubtedly misanthropic, yet he was a formidable opponent of slavery and war and could be gentle and sympathetic when dealing with people in person. He hated Ireland and the Irish, yet thought it proper to defend the country and its inhabitants from English force.
Soren Andersen: "'Blue Ruin': Revenge through the eyes of a fearful amateur" (Seattle Times)
They should have called "Blue Ruin" "Revenge of the Schlub." A much more informative title, that. Much more on point for a story about a pasty, dumpling-faced fellow with sad, fear-filled eyes who, with terrible trepidation, sets forth to kill the man who murdered his parents.
Andrew Tobias: Now is High
[John Hook] He backs up his concerns with reams more data, but this simple summary: "Buy low. Sell high. Now is high."
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Michelle in AZ
These guys & their staff are such asses! Maybe, with all the connections Lumpy has to the Russians, they can figure out how to make vodka out of all the potatoes they will be receiving.
UPDATE: Wisconsin Senator Ron Johnson is about to get a ton of pork rectums in the mail · Newswire · The A.V. Club
I would turn this over to my lawyer to extract an apology and retraction of this:
Republican Senator Sends Cease-and-Desist Letter to Constituent for Calling Too Much
We are all only temporarily able bodied.
Jeannie the Teed-Off Temp
from Marc Perkel
from that Mad Cat, JD
WHAT DOES HE KNOW AND WHEN DID HE KNOW IT!
TRUMPS CABINET SPOTTED IN INDIANA!
THE SECRET HEALTH CARE PLAN!
"WE'RE IMPRISONED THERE 'TOO' AND SO IS THE AMERICAN WAY OF LIFE."
Visit JD's site - Kitty Litter Music
In The Chaos Household
Sunny and warm, but a marine layer is on the way.
Applying for U.S. Citizenship
Patrick Stewart says he's going to apply for U.S. citizenship in an effort to fight President Donald Trump.
Speaking on Thursday's The View, Stewart was asked about a tweet he sent in February that mocked President Trump. "Had the worst sleep of my life last night. But I was sleeping less than 300 yds from where Donald Trump sleeps. Could there be a connection?" Stewart wrote.
As he explained to The View hosts, the Logan star and his wife, Sunny Ozell, were in Washington D.C. to discuss what they can do in the wake of Trump's election.
"I'm not a citizen, however, maybe it's the only good thing: as a result of this election, I am now applying for citizenship," Stewart said. "Because I want to be an American too. All of my friends in Washington said there is one thing you can do: fight, fight, oppose, oppose. But I can't do it because I'm not a citizen."
Kennedy Library Picks Obama For Award
'Profiles in Courage'
Former U.S. President Barack Obama on Thursday was named this year's winner of the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library's "Profile in Courage" award, an annual honor for leaders who stand up to political opponents.
The museum cited Obama's signature healthcare reform law, which his successor President Donald Trump has vowed to repeal and replace, restored diplomatic ties with Cuba and the Paris climate change deal as key reasons for his selection.
"President Obama has embodied the definition of courage that my grandfather cites in the opening lines of 'Profiles in Courage': grace under pressure," Jack Schlossberg, the slain U.S. president's grandson, said in a statement. "Throughout his two terms in office, he represented all Americans with decency, integrity, and an unshakeable commitment to the greater good."
The award takes its name from Kennedy's 1957 Pulitzer Prize-winning book about eight U.S. Senators who took principled stands on unpopular issues.
Obama will receive the award in a May 7 ceremony at the waterfront Boston Kennedy library.
'Profiles in Courage'
Bails on 'Celebrity Apprentice'
In a move that should surprise no one, Arnold Schwarzenegger is making it clear that any (unlikely) future version of The Celebrity Apprentice will not include him.
The host, who subbed in for now-President Donald Trump (R-Crooked) only to find out later that he was still an executive producer on the show, announced via a Friday statement that he has left the embattled NBC reality show.
Reads the statement from Schwarzenegger, "I loved every second of working with NBC and Mark Burnett. Everyone - form the celebrities to the crew to the marketing department - was a straight 10, and I would absolutely work with all of them again on a show that doesn't have this baggage."
Schwarzenegger is likely getting in front of the inevitable, as future seasons of any Apprentice series seem less and less plausible. On top of the cloud of Trump's lingering involvement, and his very public discussions of the series that solidified his fame, the show's ratings were in the tank. A NBC rep tells The Hollywood Reporter that no decision has been made about the future of the show, but there have been rumblings that longtime staffers have been told it's safe to look for other work.
Schwarzenegger's promotional tour for Celebrity Apprentice was marred by the surprise December news that Trump had retained an EP credit on the Mark Burnett and MGM TV produced series. Just a day after a Trump staffer released a statement saying that the then-president-elect had a "big stake" on the show he originally hosted, Schwarzenegger faced curious reporters at a press conference.
Jimmy Buffett-Inspired Retirement Community
If you are looking for that lost shaker of salt, look no more.
A chain of Jimmy Buffett-inspired Margaritaville senior-living communities are coming soon, obviously aimed at active retirees who like "nibblin' on sponge cake, watchin' the sun bake."
Buffett's Margaritaville company, known for restaurants, hotels and vacation resorts, recently announced it has partnered with Minto Communities, a development and building company in Florida, to build a string of easy, breezy senior neighborhoods.
The first has been dubbed Latitude Margaritaville in Daytona Beach, Florida.
The $1 billion project is expected to create almost 7,000 homes offering fitness facilities, lap pools, spas, live entertainment, personal beachfront access and, of course, booze in the blender that will soon render that frozen concoction that helps residents hang on.
Quiet Release Of Human Rights Report
The U.S. State Department released its annual report on human rights around the world on Friday but the release was overshadowed by criticism that Secretary of State Rex Tillerson (R-Putin's Bitch) gave the report little of the traditional attention or fanfare.
Tillerson declined to unveil the report in person, breaking with precedent established during both Democratic and Republican administrations. A senior U.S. official answered reporters' questions by phone on condition of anonymity rather than appearing on camera, also a break with precedent.
The report, mandated by Congress, documents human rights conditions in nearly 200 countries and territories and is put together by staff in U.S. embassies. This year's report was largely completed during former President Barack Obama's tenure.
According to the report, Philippine police and vigilantes "killed more than 6,000 suspected drug dealers and users" since July and extrajudicial killings have "increased sharply" in the Philippines in the last year. Philippine officials say their government does not tolerate human rights violations or state-sponsored extrajudicial killings.
Traditionally, the secretary of state unveils the report with public comments emphasizing the centrality of human rights in U.S. foreign policy and highlighting specific findings.
Tribal Officials Want Documents Released
U.S. and tribal officials are opposing an effort by the developer of the $3.8 billion Dakota Access oil pipeline to keep some information shielded from the public amid a court battle over the project.
Texas-based Energy Transfer Partners last month asked a federal judge to shield details such as spill response plans and pipeline features that could be targeted by anti-pipeline activists.
The pipeline to move North Dakota oil to a shipping point in Illinois has been the subject of months of protests in North Dakota, with about 750 arrests since August. There also has been vandalism to company equipment in Iowa and North Dakota.
ETP is a defendant along with the Army Corps of Engineers in a lawsuit filed by the Standing Rock and Cheyenne River Sioux, who believe the pipeline threatens water, sacred sites and their right to practice their religion. The company disputes that and says the pipeline is safe.
Tribal attorneys in court documents call the company's reasoning for wanting the documents kept secret "a ruse." The actual reason, they maintain, is that "the documents are embarrassingly inadequate and undermine (the company's) primary narrative in this case - that oil spill risk can be dismissed without further analysis or independent expert review."
"Significant quantities" of baby remains have been discovered in an apparent makeshift crypt at the site of a former Catholic home for unmarried mothers in Ireland, an official commission said Friday.
The find in the town of Tuam in western Ireland came during extensive excavations by the Commission on Mother and Baby Homes, which was set up following the first claims in 2014 of possible child burials at the site.
The Commission said it was "shocked" by the discovery.
It said in a statement that the remains had been found in what appears to have been a makeshift crypt divided into 20 chambers that had been part of a sewage system.
The government-sanctioned commission was set up following research by a local historian, Catherine Corless, who found that 796 babies and children died at the home run by the Bon Secours Order between 1925 and 1961 but there were no burial records for them.
Tribe Sues eFor Quake Damage
The Pawnee Nation filed a lawsuit on Friday in tribal court in Oklahoma against 27 oil and gas producers, seeking damages for an earthquake they said was caused from man-made activity related to hydraulic fracturing, or fracking.
The Native American group claimed that wastewater injected into disposal wells helped trigger a 5.8-magnitude earthquake in September, the strongest on record in the state, that damaged several Pawnee Nation buildings, including several that are more than 100 years old.
Lawyers for the Pawnee Nation said they believe the case is the first of its sort filed in a tribal court. They are seeking at least $250,000 in damages.
Attorneys for two of the companies named in the suit, Oklahoma City-based Cummings Oil and Tulsa-based Eagle Road Oil, could not be reached for comment.
Headquartered about 60 miles (100 km) west of Tulsa, the Pawnee Nation has 3,500 enrolled tribal citizens. It has a separate earthquake-related lawsuit pending in federal court against the Bureau of Indian Affairs and the Bureau of Land Management.
Claims To Be Rightful King Of England
Allan V. Evans
A Colorado resident named Allan V. Evans took out a huge advertisement Wednesday in the Times of London claiming that he would be the rightful king of England because he is a descendant of a royal Welsh line from the third century. He claimed that he is "a direct descendant of an unbroken primogeniture line legally documented since the 3rd century in Great Britain and registered in the Royal College of Arms."
Prince Charles, 68, is first in line to the throne after Queen Elizabeth II. If Charles, who also has the title of Prince of Wales, becomes the king, he will be the oldest heir to acquire the British throne. After Charles, his oldest son Prince William would be next in line to the throne and will become the new Prince of Wales.
Evans' 40-line, four-paragraph ad reportedly goes on to describe his list of credentials and his claims on the generations of lineage, beginning with a statement where Evans calls himself the descendant of Cunedda Wledig, the founder of the Kingdom of Wales.
Evans said he would not take the throne until after Queen Elizabeth II dies and also offered a 30-day notice to the royal family.
Evans ended his ad with a J. R. R. Tolkien reference: "TAKE HEED AND REJOICE, all Welshman, Scots, Manx, all Britons, and all citizens of this great nation called Great Britain, that the light of freedom and egalitarianism shall be promoted and promulgated, that democracy and all democratic values will be promoted ... more than a mere Tolkien story, that the men of the West are now returning and now is the time of the return of the King."
Allan V. Evans